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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1959.3/151481
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- Defining the community in community conferencing
- Pfeifer, Jeffrey E.
- In his article, 'Crime, Shame, and Community: Mediation Against Violence', Professor Scheff contends that increasing crime rates in the United States may be addressed by embracing an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) approach known as community conferencing. For the most part, this approach suggests that the involvement of community representatives in the criminal adjudication process produces an environment that, 'closely resemble[sl the form that justice takes in most traditional societies, in which small communities handle their own crimes rather than delivering the offenders into the hands of legal and correctional professionals.' It is argued that this environment allows for the expression of shame on the part of the offender through the public assumption of responsibility and ultimately pays dividends in terms of addressing victim needs and lowering recidivism rates. Given Professor Scheff's research, one would be hard-pressed not to admit that the basic premises of community conferencing have merit as a diversionary justice approach. Clearly, there is a place for community-based ADR programs in countries such as the United States, Australia and Canada. It may be argued, however, that the applicability of community conferencing is heavily dependant upon the existence of a definable community---an aspect of the program which is not addressed to any great extent in Professor Scheff's article.
- Publication type
- Journal article
- Revista Juridica: University of Puerto Rico Law Review, Vol. 67, no. 3 (1999), pp. 641-643
- Publication year
- Facultad de Derecho, Universidad de Puerto Rico
- Publisher URL
- Copyright © 1999 Jeffrey E. Pfeifer. The published version of the paper is reproduced here with the kind permission of the publisher.